New KPMG SA chief to re­store its glory

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - FRONT PAGE - NH­LAMU DLOMU

NEWLY-ap­pointed chief ex­ec­u­tive of KPMG South Africa Nh­lamu Dlomu has com­mit­ted her­self to re­store the em­bat­tled au­dit firm’s fun­da­men­tal val­ues of ethics and in­tegrity in a bid to sal­vage its cred­i­bil­ity at a time of deep­en­ing cri­sis.

This comes as Trevor Hoole ten­dered his res­ig­na­tion as chief ex­ec­u­tive yes­ter­day, with chief op­er­at­ing of­fi­cer and coun­try risk man­age­ment part­ner Steven Louw also step­ping down fol­low­ing the storm cre­ated by the work the firm did for the SA Rev­enue Ser­vice (Sars) and the Gupta fam­ily.

Five other se­nior part­ners also de­cided to leave.

KPMG SA said it would also take dis­ci­plinary ac­tion seek­ing the dis­missal of Jac­ques Wes­sels, lead part­ner on the au­dits of the non-listed Gupta en­ti­ties.

KPMG re­ceived crit­i­cism re­gard­ing the “Sars Re­port” in which it was com­mis­sioned to in­ves­ti­gate al­le­ga­tions of a rogue unit al­legedly set up by for­mer fi­nance min­is­ter Pravin Gord­han, who was Sars com­mis­sioner at the time.

Dlomu, who was pre­vi­ously KPMG SA’s head for peo­ple and change, has ex­ten­sive client ex­pe­ri­ence, lead­ing sig­nif­i­cant trans­for­ma­tion in the fi­nan­cial ser­vices and other in­dus­try sec­tors here and over­seas.

She has over 17 years’ ex­pe­ri­ence in man­age­ment con­sult­ing and man­age­ment roles gained mainly in or­gan­i­sa­tional de­vel­op­ment and hu­man re­sources across vari- ous in­dus­try sec­tors.

“KPMG has a long and dis­tin­guished record of ser­vice in South Africa. Ethics and in­tegrity are fun­da­men­tal val­ues of KPMG and these will be the guid­ing prin­ci­ples of my lead­er­ship,” Dlomu said.

“My first or­der of busi­ness will be to build a man­age­ment team com­mit­ted to these prin­ci­ples. That team will be an­nounced in the com­ing days. The skill, ex­pe­ri­ence and en­ergy of KPMG’s new man­age­ment team will en­sure sta­bil­ity and high-qual­ity ser­vice to our clients.”

KPMG said the find­ings of the in­ves­ti­ga­tion had re­in­forced the crit­i­cal­ity of a lead­er­ship and gov­er­nance model that set the right tone from the top and en­sured ap­pro­pri­ate ac­count­abil­ity and re­spon­si­bil­ity at ev­ery level of lead­er­ship within the firm.

In ad­di­tion to these lead­er­ship changes, KPMG SA said it would en­hance its cor­po­rate gov­er­nance pro­cesses.

In De­cem­ber 2014, KPMG SA was com­mis­sioned by Sars to per­form an ex­ten­sive doc­u­ment in­ves­tiga­tive re­view which re­sulted in the Re­port on Al­le­ga­tions of Ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties and Mis­con­duct.

Gord­han was in­ves­ti­gated by the Di­rec­torate for Pri­or­ity Crime In­ves­ti­ga­tion (Hawks) over the al­leged unit, but was charged with an ad­min­is­tra­tive is­sue over the re­hir­ing of for­mer deputy com­mis­sioner Ivan Pil­lay and his pen­sion pack­age.

KPMG said the ev­i­dence in the doc­u­men­ta­tion pro­vided did not sup­port the in­ter­pre­ta­tion that Gord­han knew, or ought to have known, of the unit’s “rogue” na­ture.

KPMG said it recog­nised and re­gret­ted the im­pact its re­port had had and that it had had “no po­lit­i­cal mo­ti­va­tion or in­tent to mis­lead”.

KPMG then of­fered to re­pay the R23 mil­lion fee it re­ceived for the work per­formed for Sars, or “to make a donation for the same amount to char­ity”. – ANA

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